song of rhiannon

Stevie’s favorite things

I have received a request to post Stevie’s favorite things (”music, books, food, poets and all things beyond, far and in between”), so I gathered some things from several interviews and Q&As.

I feel that I have to add some sort of disclaimer though - This list could never be a thorough look into Stevie’s likes as she’s a very private person (as she should be!) and I’m far from being an expert. All the things listed here were mentioned publicly and I have no intention of intruding or disrespecting. I hope you enjoy it, and if you think of things I’ve left out, please drop me a line. 

▬ Music

It’s almost impossible to gather all the artists, bands, and songs Stevie has cited as favorites in just one place… Nothing I post will do justice to her love of music. “I have a love of music that goes far beyond what I do onstage.” (Dailytelegraph.au, 2017) 

 • ”Tom Petty is my favorite rock star.“ (BST Hyde Park Festival, 2017) 

•  "If you could do a duet with anyone in the world, with whom would it be?” “I would say James Taylor.” (Facebook Q&A, 2014) 

• “So I got got the flamboyancy and the attitude from Janis and then I got the humbleness and the grace from Jimi Hendrix. And then one other thing, I got a little bit of slinky from Grace Slick.(South by Southwest Music Festival, 2013) 

 •"I have striven to live up to the songwriting of Don Henley and Glenn Frey, Jackson Browne and Joni Mitchell.“ (1981) 

• “If I can sit down and be going through a crisis and I can listen to Joni Mitchell or something and I can feel from her that she understands, even though she doesn’t know me, then, for me… I love that, and that’s what I try to do.” (1976)

Here’s just a little of what she has mentioned over the decades: Her Grandad, Leon Russell, The Everly Brothers,  Led Zeppelin, Eagles, Buffalo Springfield, Foo Fighters, Vanessa Carlton, Haim, and so many more. Click here for a playlist containing 73 songs Stevie has mentioned during interviews.

▬ Poets

“Do you have any poets you enjoy?”
Yes, Oscar Wilde and Edgar Allan Poe.” (Q&A, rockalittle.com) 

I think that poets and songwriters have a lot in common because a songwriter really has to be a poet first. That’s how we live our lives. It’s the same kind of thinking. Unlike people who write fiction or make movies, we put our stories into these small little containers filled with mostly short lines and verses. This is how we talk about the way we feel and talk about things and explain the world and ourselves.” (The Creative Independent, 2016)

Books

The Mabinogion Trilogy - Evangeline Walton 

These four fantasy-fiction books by American author Evangeline Walton (The Prince of Annwn, The Children of Llyr, The Song of Rhiannon and The Island of The Mighty) are based on traditional Welsh myths. Someone sent them to me back in 1978 because I’d written a song called Rhiannon 5 years earlier. Walton started her work around 1934 and finished in 1974, which was right around the time that I wrote Rhiannon, so I felt like when her work ended, mine began.

• Wide Sargasso Sea - Jean Rhys

Wide Sargasso Sea is inspired by Bronte’s classic Jane Eyre. The novel explores the life of Mrs Rochester, ‘the wild woman in the attic’, in 1830s Jamaica before she was brought to England by Mr Rochester. Jean Rhys wrote this book as a precursor to Jane Eyre because of her love for the Bronte novel. I saw the film adaptation of the book in the early 1990s and it inspired me to write the song of the same name on my album.

• Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte

I first read Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights (written by Charlotte’s sister Emily Bronte) when I was in college in California in the late 1960s. They are two of my favourite books because they’re just so brilliantly written. The beauty of both these classics is that they were fantastic when I was a teenager and they still appeal to me now as a 63-year-old woman.”

• The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe

“I’ve read all of Poe’s poetry as well as Lord Byron’s and Oscar Wilde’s. He is deep and brooding - you can make many songs from his poems. I like Byron for the same reason - his characters are dark and intense like Lindsey. Oscar Wilde’s work is more flamboyant, but he was a really good storyteller.”

Out of Africa - Karen Blixen 

 “This memoir recounts the time Karen Blixen (a Danish author) spent in Kenya from 1914. When I saw the 1985 movie version with Meryl Streep and Robert Redford, it just killed me and inspired me to read the book. Both make me sob so much I can hardly breathe. Later, my assistant gave me a beautiful old copy, which makes me treasure the story more. I even stayed in the Karen Blixen suite at the Hotel D'Angleterre in her native Copenhagen. The relationship between Blixten and the Safari hunter Denys Finch Hatton broke my heart. It’s a book about finding and losing love.”

The Little Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupery 

I first discovered The Little Prince when I was in high school and fell in love with the book straight away. My make-up artist has a tattoo of the Little Prince on the side of her leg, so I’m often reminded of what a beautiful story it is. It’s a sweet fable about the relationship between a little boy and his love for a rose. There is such a strong philosophy of love and loneliness running throughout the book that I can’t help but return to it again and again.” 

The Twilight Series - Stephenie Meyer

Moonlight (A Vampire’s Dream), a song on my new album was written about New Moon. The song is about what happens when a relationship breaks down or, more specifically, when you are abandoned in some way. I could totally relate to that. I think that Meyer’s stories are magnificent and I’m amazed at how she built her complex world. Writing a song seems much simpler that writing a novel - a song is just five verses and a chorus! I think the love story between Edward and Bella is going to live on forever, like Beauty and the Beast.

• “Right now I am reading ‘Wheel of Fortune’ by Susan Howatch.” (Q&A, rockalittle.com, 2000s)

• “On the bookshelves are volumes about the Kabbalah, Madame Blavatsky and Arthurian legend; a copy of The Johns Hopkins Consumer Guide to Drugs sits beside Luxury Hotels of the World.” (Stevie Nicks: a survivor’s story, telegraph.uk, 2007)

• “She is gurgling scales along with a recording of her vocal coach while flipping through a new memoir by Janis Joplin’s road manager. ”Look,“ Nicks says, perking up, “I knew Janis wore sling-back heels.” (Rolling Stone, 2015)

Movies

• Mentioned: Jean Cocteau’s “La Belle et la Bête”, “Mary, Queen of Scots”, “Julia”. 

• Stevie’s favorite horror movie is “The Haunting of Hill House”, however… “Nicks has very little experience with horror: she’s seen only a handful of old horror movies, like “Bride of Dracula”. “They don’t scare me,” she says. “I just love the costumes.” - (AHS:Coven interview, 2014) 

• “I can see a movie—say, it’s a movie with Michael Fassbender called “The Light Between Oceans”—and I can’t get this movie out of my head. The tragedy of this movie is so intense and so beautiful you can hardly stand it and you go home and think about it for days afterwards.” (The Creative Independent, 2016)

▬ TV Shows

• “I worked on the edit of my documentary about the making of In Your Dreams. And then I got pneumonia. With my pneumonia and my mother’s death I watched the entire first season of Game Of Thrones—so that was great! That certainly took my mind off everything.” Not only did the series distract the Grammy winner, but it re-ignited her creativity, inspiring her to write some G.O.T.-centric fan poems. Explains Nicks, “I’ve written a bunch of poetry about it—one for each of the characters. On Jon Snow… On Arya…. On Cersei and Jaime.” She also says that she has a talent crush on the author of the Game of Thrones book series, George R. R. Martin, who is her age, and “would love to write some music” for the show. (VanityFair, 2013)

• Among the TV shows she loves, besides American Horror Story and Million Dollar Listing, are The Good Wife, Ugly Betty, Glee, Elementary (“That guy [Jonny Lee Miller] who used to be married to Angelia Jolie, oh my God, he’s amazing. I’d marry him. In a second”), and “all of the creepy shows,” like the Law and Order franchises, Criminal Minds, NCIS, and NCIS: L.A. (Vulture, 2014)

• “Judging Amy is my favorite!” (Q&A, rockalittle.com)

Food

I ate with Stevie… You have two girls with a sweet tooth, it’s like carnage.” (Chrissie Hynde, talking about Thanksgiving with Stevie, November, 2016) 

I am always on the Weight Watchers diet. I kind of eat food that is fixed for me all over the US. I don’t really get to eat my favorite foods, like vanilla bean ice cream, gelato, cherry pie, and lemon cake, and chocolate chip cookies. I’d love to have them every day, but I don’t. I have to zip back into that long, black, seriously tight dress! (Facebook Q&A, 2014) 

“I eat one yogurt every single night right before I go to bed. It’s my, like, special time.”

Mexican is my favorite, but I don’t eat it very often. I can make a GREAT omelet!“ (Q&A, rockalittle.com) 

It’s so interesting – when my mother was pregnant with me, the only thing she could keep down was enchiladas and refried beans. As for me, whenever I’m sick, the only thing I can tolerate is Mexican food! So the fact that they actually pulled that out of the air was so great. Because if I was ever going to have a restaurant that’s what it would be." 

"Stevie really doesn’t have alot of time to cook… but if we can get her to, she makes one heck of a sandwich!! (It’s all about the sauces she makes…) (Ask Lori [Nicks], rockalittle.com) 

"I just eat the airline food, but I always get a Starbucks soy latte before boarding.” 

"Stevie is an iced tea kind of gal.” (Q&A, Cory Buckingham, 2003)

Passions 

I like antiques, I love old things. I must be very old underneath because I love beautiful old things. I love dancing. I love most of all writing songs. I love animals!“ (1977)

I absolutely still draw. I have 4 drawings out here with me right now. Drawing for me is like a tranquilizer. It puts me into another state of mind and takes me out of the Rock N’ Roll mind and puts me into that drawing I’m working on. I can just sit and draw for hours and hours. It is food for my soul. Someday I will put our my art, just as I have begun putting out my polaroids.“ (Facebook Q&A, 2014) 

Painting in my room that looks over the ocean. That is my favorite thing.“ (Q&A, rockalittle.com)

"I like to decorate! I like to go decorating shopping at furniture stores. I’m constantly changing around the rooms in my house, so that’s something I really love to do. You’ll be at my house one day, and 2 weeks later, you’ll come in and it’ll be different.” (Facebook Q&A, 2014)

“Nicks moves among the collection of colourful Art Deco lamps that stand on every surface, carefully orchestrating the ambient light. ’That’s the famous blue lamp that’s been in lots of photos; that’s a Tiffany,’ she says. ’And so is that one. I don’t know about the others.’ (Stevie Nicks: a survivor’s story, telegraph.uk, 2007) 

Hawaii, Paris, New Zeland.”  
I would have to say it is New York City. There is so much energy in the city, and so much to do there. It is a very exciting city for me.”  (Favorite destinations, Q&A, rockalittle.com)

Stevie actually goes out a lot. In every city she goes shopping and out for dinner, at the least.” (Q&A, Cory Buckingham, 2003) 

Stevie also shops a lot, and in perfect female form, jewelry shopping tops her list. She loves it when a group of people, maybe 8 or more, get together for dinner. She can sit and chat and laugh for hours on end. Literally. Although I didn’t travel with the band, and we were very rarely in the same cities, I do know that Stevie goes out a lot on days off. She loves shopping, whether it be for something she actually needs or wants, or just strolling around window shopping. She and her posse go out to dinner a lot, and also spends time writing and taking pictures. She really a lot of fun.”  (Q&A, Cory Buckingham, 2003)

“You want your journals written by hand in a book, because someday, if you have daughters — I don’t have daughters, but I have fairy goddaughters, thousands of them — all of these books are gonna go to them, and they’re gonna sit around just like we are now, and they’re gonna read them out loud, and they’re going to be able to know what my life was.” (New York Times, 2014)

And finally one of the passions I believe many of us fans share with her:

Yorkies are my favorites because they have such amazing personalities.” (Q&A, rockalittle.com)

And she has these birds that sing and that is the legend of the song of the birds of Rhiannon. And they sing this song that is uh, said takes away pain and suffering and if you hear the song you just sort of blank out and go away and then when you wake up everthing’s all right. And it is a wonderful, wonderful story which I use a lot, because there’s a lot of… there seems to be a lot of need for the story of Rhiannon around lately, because if people are sad or have lost anybody or something the story really makes a lot of sense.
—  Stevie Nicks, Starsound Special RKO Radio - December 21, 1981

I feel like Sign of the Times is gonna be Harry’s epic, signature song like Rhiannon is to Stevie Nicks. And years from now we’re gonna have a collection of performances and someone’s gonna go “my favorite was the graham norton performance” and someone else is gonna go “yeah, but have you heard this one…? It’s rare and maybe not his best, i heard he was sick that night, but he did this little [note or lyric] change and it saved my life.”

youtube

Her Lover

Mashup of Fleetwood Mac: Rhiannon and Dreams

Ally & Stevie

2

@nashvillestacy:Meting STEVIE NICKS!!! THROW BACK THURSDAY: 1996. They said she was coming. No one believed it. She came into the party at midnight dressed as Glenda the Good Witch. She told stories about her time working as a waitress while Lindsey played guitar all day. And that she wanted to turn her song Rhiannon into a ballet. She drank scotch and smoked - and then in the wee hours played Rhiannon on the piano. I nearly died….. #stevienicks #throwbackthursday #tbt #nashville”

anonymous asked:

What are her witchiest songs? Besides Rhiannon?

Stevie’s witchiest (or moodiest ) songs with links to the appropriate live versions and demos: Sisters of The Moon, Gold Dust Woman, Kind Of Woman, Sorcerer, The Nightmare, CrystalLady From The Mountains, Running Through The Garden, Battle Of The Dragon, Forest Of The Black RosesCecelia, Forsaken Love, Planets Of The Universe, Maker Of Birds, The Witch, Nomad, Have No Heart, Night Gallery, Mirror Mirror, Joan Of Arc, Ooh Baby

The thing that amazes me most about Stevie Nicks’ song “Rhiannon” is that Stevie wrote it without any prior knowledge of the celtic goddess and her story. She just happened to come across the name Rhiannon in a novel she was reading to pass the time in an airport. She thought, “wow this is a beautiful name” and something powerful resonated deeply within her. Then she wrote the song…about a mystical woman, named Rhiannon, who was free, in control of her life, always lifting herself up…a healer…birds, horses, lovers. Only a little while after did she realize that she had written a song that fits perfectly with the goddess, Rhiannon. She literally FELT Rhiannon’s powers within her soul without actually knowing such powers existed. If that’s not magic y'all, I don’t know what is.